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China Vows to Curb Commodities Speculation to Ensure Price Stability

Runaway commodity prices in both onshore and offshore markets have raised regulatory concerns
  • Move is latest measure to slow commodities price surge
  • ‘Hoarding’ of goods will not be tolerated, ministry says


China will crack down on the hoarding and speculation of commodities while ensuring supplies and prices are stable, in a move to tame price volatility seen in recent months, said the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. 

“We will coordinate with relevant departments to ensure the stability of bulk commodities supplies and prices… guide upstream and downstream players in the industrial chain to stabilise production, supply and marketing of raw materials,” ministry spokesperson Huang Libin told a press conference on Friday, according to a transcript on the ministry’s website.

“In responding to the risk of the market’s price fluctuation, we must resolutely crack down on hoarding, malicious speculation, and the bidding up of prices.”

Speculative Trading

Chinese policymakers have stepped up efforts to curb surging commodity prices that have squeezed manufacturers’ margins in the world’s second-biggest economy to prevent the price increases from being passed on to consumers. 

In recent months, authorities have been warning against speculative trading, auctioning off base metals reserves, and launching probes into prices and reserves of iron ore, coal and urea, among its measures to counter tight supplies.

China’s state planner had announced on Friday plans to boost its capacity to store national coal reserves to around 600 million tonnes, approximately 15% of annual coal consumption.

Separately, another ministry spokesperson Tian Yulong said that China currently has opened 961,000 5G base stations, in the country’s bid to accelerate and expand its 5G network buildouts.

  • Reuters

Mark McCord

Mark McCord is a financial journalist with more than three decades experience writing and editing at global news wires including Bloomberg and AFP, as well as daily newspapers in Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne. He has covered some of the biggest breaking news events in recent years including the Enron scandal, the New York terrorist attacks and the Iraq War. He is based in the UK. You can tweet to Mark at @MarkMcC64371550.


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